Category Archives: cfp

CFP: Failure–Interruptions, Confrontations, and Silences

Call for Papers

10th Annual Communication Graduate Caucus Conference
March 5-6, 2015
River Building, Carleton University, Ottawa

“Some of the chief dilemmas of our age, both public and personal, 
turn on communication or communication gone sour” (Peters, 1999)

From blackouts and security breaches, to misrepresentations and disconnections, failure is a crucial component of communication. Our 10th annual conference, Failure: Interruptions, Confrontations, and Silences, invites explorations into the ways communication is impeded, shaped, and even enabled by forms of failure. As an articulation of conflict, degradation, and misunderstanding, failure is intimately tied to ideas of success and change in political, socio-economic, and cultural spheres. In the wake of broken and silenced speech and actions, failure undergirds the drive for improved forms of communication — motivating revisions to public policies, networks, media representations, and everyday practices. The idea of communication is intimately tied to varied forms of fallibility, and in this multivalent vein, we invite scholars to envision failure as communicative interruptions, as provoking confrontations, as inducing silences, and as undergirding successes.

Our conference offers a collegial and supportive environment in which to present your work, receive feedback, and compete for a student paper prize. In addition, you will hear a world-class keynote speaker and have the opportunity to network with colleagues from across the country. 

We welcome 250-word abstract proposals for individual paper presentations that consider, amongst other topics, questions related to:

  • Technological malfunctions and infrastructural breakdowns (e.g. security breaches; planned obsolescence; grid blackouts; emergent effects)
  • Economic and political failures (e.g. financial breakdowns; failed corporations; failed competition, failed states; disaster politics; failed uprisings, wars; political downfalls).
  • Failure and Communication theory (e.g. debates on dialogue; the public sphere; mass media; social (dis)connections; language and meaning; unrealized expectations and ideals; success and discipline; the fallibility of communication)
  • Politics of miscommunication (e.g. failed campaigns; revolutionary mobilizations; apologies and disclosures; failed forms of witness and (re)cognition)
  • Silenced and/or misrepresented identities and histories (e.g. invisible/inaudible individuals and groups; silenced testimonies; lost and revised histories; the censored and unnamed; tactical/subversive silences; (mis)recognitions of gender, race, ethnicity, ability, class, sex, age)
  • Popular forms of failure (e.g. fan culture narratives; #fail and social media; ‘live’ event failures; comedic fallibilities; failure as an aesthetic and political tool; how failure influences mainstream, countercultural, and subaltern texts)

Please send your 250-word abstract proposals to 
no later than DEC. 19, 2014
 CGC conference submission in the email subject line.

Upon abstract acceptance, students are encouraged to submit their 10-12 page papers to the student paper competition. Papers are due Feb. 2, 2015.

Follow us on Twitter @CGC_Carleton


CFP: Public Intellectuals Lecture Series

Call for Papers

Public Intellectuals Lecture Series

Presented by the Department of English and Literature at Carleton University and the Ottawa Public Library

The Public Intellectuals Lecture Series aims to create a bridge between scholars in the Arts and the general public. While the complex ideas these scholars help develop have important, real world applications to the way we understand and interact with each other, they are often couched in jargon and confined to the journals and lecture halls of the academic sphere. This lecture series will offer a venue and format in which scholars can present these ideas to the public in an accessible manner.

Each lecture will use a popular culture example to explain a critical term, question, or controversy. These pop culture examples could include a bestselling novel, a TV Show, a pop song, a celebrity controversy, or a social media phenomenon. The examples will give the audience a frame of reference, allowing it to better understand the ideas the scholars are presenting. Presenters will avoid academic jargon whenever possible, and will rely heavily on paraphrasing, rather than quoting from dense theoretical texts. The goal of each lecture is to help the audience understand the critical ideas using a popular culture example and everyday language to describe those ideas.

For example, a lecture titled “Agency and Game of Thrones” might examine the way scholars use and understand the term “agency” using characters from the popular television series as examples. Likewise, “Is Fifty Shades of Grey a Feminist Novel?” could use the popular novel as a way to introduce different feminist perspectives. Finally, “Roaring Fireworks: Katy Perry and the Neoliberal Self” would use Katy Perry’s music to examine what neoliberal values are and how they influence everyday decisions.

This series is more than a novelty. It offers members of the general public a chance to continue their pursuit of lifelong learning by connecting them with scholars and complex ideas in an accessible, non-threatening forum. These ideas have the potential to transform the way individuals think about themselves and their community. It also allows scholars an opportunity to share their work with a wide audience and become part of the broader community in a meaningful way.

Lectures will take place at the main branch of the Ottawa Public Library at 120 Metcalfe St. The initial series will be four lectures, the first taking place in mid-March, followed by two lectures in April, and ending with one lecture in mid-May.

Proposals should be 300-500 words and introduce both the critical term/question/controversy as well as the popular culture text that will be used in the lecture. Proposals should also use the same simplified language that the lecture will use. A short biography of the presenter (50 words) should accompany proposals.

Send proposals to the series curator, Andrew Connolly ( The deadline for proposals is January 2.

The Prestige of Literature (Carleton University) — cfp

Prestige of literature